The State of Workplace Post-Pandemic: What Can We Expect in 2021?

As we head into the end of the year and begin to look at the workplace in 2021, it is apparent that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the traditional way of working in America. Since March, we’ve seen the largest body of American workers doing their jobs from home instead of in a corporate setting. Some people might wonder if this signifies the end of the modern office as we know it. At CBI, we would argue that the corporate workplace is here to stay, but the workplace dynamic will become more strategic and intentional as we move forward. 

A leading national design firm, Gensler, recently conducted a Work From Home Survey in which they interviewed more than 2,300 U.S. workers across 10 different industries. In this survey, Gensler found that only 1 in 10 U.S. workers regularly worked from home prior to the pandemic and that only 12% of those surveyed wanted to continue working from home regularly post-pandemic. This statistic aligns with what we are seeing from our own clients – working from home only works for some people some of the time. 

We are partnering with many of our clients to conduct discovery and alignment sessions to redefine the workplace post-pandemic and determine what they want their associate experience to be. Choice, flexibility and safety are major focuses for many organizations, yet time-honored ideas of culture, collaboration, problem solving, innovation and community remain factors that still inspire. 

Charlis Brock, EVP & Market Executive for Charlotte and Tennessee says, “When we are talking to our clients about what their future environment looks like, we are seeing that this pandemic has only accelerated certain workplace trends that were already underway. Co-working and flexible spaces will continue to play a vital role in the modern workplace as our clients still want to create hubs of culture, community, collaboration and engagement which is difficult to achieve with remote working.”

David Cripe, General Manager in our Nashville location adds, “Our clients in Nashville are really looking to us to help them understand where they are today and where they want to be in the future. Many are taking a more strategic approach to their workplace and looking ahead to see where they can increase engagement, add value and maximize the use of their real estate to promote the best outcomes in 2021.”

Will there be changes to the workplace in 2021? Most certainly. But is the modern office going away because of the COVID-19 pandemic? Not a chance. 

There are many ways CBI can help businesses decide what type of future workplace is best for their organization. From strategic alignment sessions to engagement workshops, we partner to help businesses plan and ensure their workplace is optimized for success. 

*Photo courtesy of Knoll, Inc.


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